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A Blood Test For Rheumatoid Arthritis is Important

Jun 23, 2008
There is many information about rheumatoid arthritis available in medical books and online spread over many websites. You can find all the facts, regular medical treatments and alternative treatment online and you can even try to diagnose yourself by doing research online. It is alway good to do your own thinking but to confirm your thoughts you need to see a physician who can do some blood test for rheumatoid arthritis and treat you properly.

There are a number of different blood test for rheumatoid arthritis, and they all give answerer to different specifications and questions. They are all important for the diagnostic evaluation and eventually the treatment of this debilitating disease. The blood tests are designed to locate the disease and confirm if what you where thinking was right. Without these blood tests a good diagnoses is not possible because they are the most important indicators to determine the condition.

There are four categories of blood test for rheumatoid arthritis:

- erythrocyte sedimentation rate
- C-reactive protein
- rheumatoid factor
- plasma viscosity

The first test called Erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) tells the degree of inflammation in your body. This is done by a specific test where the blood is let to fall down a tube and measuring the time it takes to fall, if the blood falls very fast trough the tube it indicates an inflammation somewhere in the body. When you are healthy the sedimentation rate is normally low. The results of this test points to a major inflammation somewhere in the body, the test is not specific to a disease like arthritis but it gives one of the clues for the diagnosis.

The blood test for C-reactive protein works almost the same as the ESR. It also isn't that specific but it still shows if irritation is existing or not in your body.

The Rheumatoid factor test is positive with 70-90 percent of all people with rheumatoid arthritis. But this test has a big disadvantage, it will only be positive if your condition is severe.

The plasma viscosity test is a recent type of diagnostic procedure which replaces ESR tests rapidly. The advantage of this test over ESR is that there are fewer variables which can affect the result, so it can give a more direct impression of the plasma protein content of a sample.

Blood tests for rheumatoid arthritis are essential

Your doctor will probably use more than one type of blood test to come to the right diagnosis. The tests have proved as an effective and essential tool to do this. The tests have been used in many hospitals and laboratory to help the physician to find the cause of symptoms.

It is of the utmost importance that before you subject yourself to any procedure you know if there are any preparations prior to the test. If there are instructions you should follow, you need to follow them precisely because laboratory workers are knowledgeable with these instructions. You should also keep your physician well informed about the results of test and the way you are reaction on any treatment.
About the Author
Jonathan Mitchell knows from personal experience what it means to wake up with pain. Telling the world about arthritis and the things you can't and can do with it is the reason his blog exists where he talks about subjects ranging from knox gelatin for arthritis to natural arthritis pain relief and everything in between.
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